Monday, April 18, 2011

Falafel and Gravy

Have you ever seen Survivor? Sometime around the fifth day the tribe members start having food fantasies. They spend hours going over what they would choose if Jeff Probst magically disappeared and was replaced by a 7-11. Hot fudge sundaes, french fries, chili dogs. No one ever mentions tabouleh, say, or that precious quinoa all you glutenistas constantly go on about.  It's always an Outback commercial when the ranting starts.

This is my pregnancy appetite right now. Foods that are never appealing seem like crack right now and old standbys that could be desert island choices make my stomach turn thinking about them. Except stroganoff. It would make the cattle farmers happy to know that I could eat stroganoff every day of my life and wake up looking forward to the smell of mushrooms and meat cooking.

Nick tries to remind me that jalapenos all over my chili tots (yes, tots, french fries are gross, I could not explain this current logic, sue me) is not going to make me happy six hours from now and I am painfully aware of how thin the walls of our apartment are, but I am like a grizzly ripping apart a salmon when my brain and gag center finally get my esophagus to agree to let something past. I chewed a mouthful of muesli for about three minutes the other day but could not get the throat to say yes. It wanted watermelon.

One of the strangest cravings I get is for Armenian food. My DNA is partly authentic Caucasian, and I am always down for a great falafel, but I am INSATIABLE lately and everything today must be minty and garlicky.

Not enough of you are making this perfect food and so, although there will not be pictures, I will tell you the greatest fastest way to a foilc acid-filled Meatless Monday ever. Listen up:

Soak 2 cups chickpeas for 2 days in the refrigerator in just enough water to cover. Drain and let air dry for an hour or two before you use. Food processor : chickpeas, 1 small onion, 1/2 bunch mint, 1/2 bunch parsley, 2 cloves garlic, 1 medium egg, 1 slice bread, 2 big pinches salt, 20 grinds pepper, tablespoon cumin, juice of 1 small lemon. Process on low and stir a few times so it's evenly ground into a thick paste. Chunks of chickpea will make your balls fall apart. Fry a little, taste it and adjust if you need to.  Balls or patties. Oil to 300 or so, 1 minute each side. Try to share.

Tzatziki is 1 cup yogurt, 2 tablespoons lemon juice, other half bunch of mint, finely chopped, 1/2 cup chopped or grated cucumber, 1 clove garlic as much salt and pepper as your dead old tastebuds need. Get flatbread.

One and a half paragraphs and your colon says THANK YOU.

This Meatless Monday post has been brought to you by my uterus.